How To Paint Furniture Without Sanding

Sanding is one of the most important stages/ processes of any wood specialist. If you are planning to paint some furniture, you most definitely know that sanding is one of the things that ease the painting process.

However, then sanding is quite a time-consumer, and it can get messy. Even with its messy and time-consuming nature, sanding proves important to a professional furniture painter.

But what about when you want to paint furniture without sanding?
That is what we will be discussing in this article. It might seem challenging to manage, but we will help you with it. That said, here is a guide on how to paint furniture without sanding;

First off, you should know that there are two options when it comes to painting furniture without sanding. They include the following;

Initial Prep/Extra Work Option.

In some cases, you might need to do some preparation on the wood project before you start painting.

No Need For Prep.

Some projects don’t require any preparation. You just start painting right away.
We will look at each option, along with ways of how to paint furniture without the need for sanding.

In this case, you will need to prep the woodwork before you start painting. There are two approaches here. You can either use a Bonding Primer or Liquid Sander.

1. Using a Bonding Primer

Bonding primer painting

The bonding primer is ideal if you want to use a specific paint on your furniture. Usually, the bonding primer will correctly work as a sanding alternative. It tends to stick to the glossy surface strongly, which then offers a smooth surface to apply the paint.

A high-quality bonding primer offers a good coat for your furniture. The main work of the bonding primer is to get the paint to adhere to any surface. Regardless of the type of wood, you are working on a bonding primer will make it easier to paint. The best part is that the bonding tends will dry in about 60 minutes.

2. Preparing with a Liquid Sander/Deglosser

While this might have the term sanding, it doesn’t work like the regular sanding. The liquid sander is basically a chemical that dulls the varnish/paint that you intend to paint over. It also works like the bonding primer since it helps to make the paint stick to the coat.

Liquid Sandpaper

A Deglosser or liquid sander is a worthwhile choice if you have intricate woodwork. Usually, the liquid will be applied to the surface of the furniture. After that, there will be a chemical reaction, which will cause the liquid to grip onto the new paint that you will apply.

Liquid sander is very easy to use, but it has an unpleasant smell. You might want to wear protective goggles and a pair of gloves.

Options 2: When No Preparation Work is needed

You can still paint your furniture without really preparing the surface for painting. Let’s look at the available approaches:

1. Using Milk Paint and a Bonding Agent

milk painting for furniture

When you want to avoid the toxic VOCs, you can use a blend of milk paint and bonding agent. The two must be mixed in equal parts.

Milk paint is sold as a powder or when it is already mixed. It is a biodegradable and nontoxic paint that is many furniture painters’ favorite. The bonding agent is usually a milky substance that will work as a primer.

This helps to make the paint to stick to your furniture. The mixture is easy to use, and it holds to your furniture surface incredibly. You must mix the two before you apply it to the furniture.

2. Using Chalk Paint

Using chalk paint for furniture painting

Chalk paint is commonly known when you want to paint furniture without sanding. It comes with an elegant matte finish, which doesn’t require any initial preparation. It is easy to use and can stick to any surface.

3. Using Mineral Paint

Using mineral painting for furniture

This option is best suited for those that want to achieve a super-durable finish. Mineral paint is nontoxic and very much durable. Furthermore, the paint is waterproof, which is an added benefit.

No preparation is needed when you want to work with this paint. You’ll have to dig deeper into your pockets though, but it’s worth every penny.


Whichever option you decide to go with, you should always ensure that you understand how it works and also consider the necessary factors.

Decide if you want one that needs some preparation or not and if you have the time. All in all, ensure that you always make the right paint/bonding choice that should be durable enough.

David B. Harper

David is a Professional Craftsman & woodworking expert for 8 years, and in that time has written huge resources and guides on woodworking and tools.

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